Big sugary drinks: next CRD ban?

Medical Health officer weighs-in on newly-minted New York regulations in fight against obesity

Big sugary drinks took a hit last week in North America’s battle against obesity.

New York City’s board of health passed a rule banning sales of sodas larger than 473 millilitres at restaurants, concession stands and other eateries – but customers with a sweet tooth in the Capital Region could be the next to notice a menu change.

Never one to be left out of the discussion on health regulations, Vancouver Island Health Authority’s chief medical health officer Dr. Richard Stanwick – an outspoken leader in the successful campaigns to ban public smoking, idling vehicles and teens using tanning beds within the CRD – is considering what local action could be taken to regulate consumption of high-calorie drinks.

“This is a concern,” Stanwick said. “We do know the contribution of a sugary diet to overall obesity rates and a bunch of other things, including diabetes.”

Rather than lobbying for a cap on portion sizes, a better approach, Stanwick said, might involve regulating amounts of sugar within products, similar to the province’s move to restrict trans fats in 2009.

Emblazoning packaging with a symbol indicating the amount of sugar in sweetened drink is one option VIHA’s medical health officers have considered and may bring forward in the future, he said. A single 473 ml drink (slightly more than a regular can of pop at 355 ml) may contain as many as 16 teaspoons of sugar.

Quoting the Canadian Institute for Health Information, Stanwick points to the tripling of obesity rates in 12-to 17-year-olds since 1980.

“Clearly we have our work cut out for us,” Stanwick said. “This is an issue that’s on the radar of every medical health officer in the province.”

nnorth@saanichnews.com

 

 

Just Posted

Overworked and understaffed: More than 300 vacancies in Vancouver Island nursing

Tentative deal with province includes ‘working short premium’ to encourage hiring

CRD committee proposes ending livestock payouts to farmers

The bylaw has existed since the creation of the CRD’s animal control service in 1979

Victoria city council seeks authority to tax empty homes

Council is asking the province for the authority to invoke a vacancy tax

Backyardigans, Max & Ruby stage shows add to Family Day in Sidney

Bodine Hall shows make room for kids to sing, dance, enjoy Family Day weekend

Saanich Mayor Fred Haynes says municipality will re-group after Rowing Canada decision

Haynes said he is “quite disappointed” but also respects choice of North Cowichan as national centre

VIDEO: Excessive speed on the Malahat captured by dash cam footage

Poster calls driving ‘dangerous, obnoxious and disrespectful’

POLL: Should people have to license their cats?

The Victoria Natural History Society has sent letters to 13 municipalities in… Continue reading

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Jan. 15

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Olympian snowboarder Max Parrot diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma

Each year in Canada, approximately 900 people are diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma

‘Prince of Pot’ Marc Emery accused of sexual assault, harassment

Emery denied the allegations, but a Toronto woman says she is not the only one speaking out

Vancouver Island photographer makes National Geographic’s 2018 elite

Rare double honour for Marston from the 36 best Your Shots out of nearly 19,000 photos

Ex-Liberal candidate in Burnaby, B.C., says volunteer wrote controversial post

Karen Wang dropped out following online post singling out NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh’s ethnicity

Asteroids are smacking Earth twice as often as before

The team counted 29 craters that were no older than 290 million years

Canada’s arrest of Huawei exec an act of ‘backstabbing,’ Chinese ambassador says

China has called Canada’s arrest of Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou ‘politically motivated’

Most Read